Chilean blueberry crop and export report

A more active harvest pace is being registered in the V and VI Regions while this season’s peak in the latter is expected to be reached during next week. Meanwhile, pickings are progressing well in the Metropolitan Region, where the peak would be reported during early December. Regions to the south show good fruit growth and rainfall has been registered, which has not currently affected production levels.

A more active exports pace has been registered, yet remaining lower than last season. A total of 665 tons were exported during Week 46, decreasing by 11% regarding 2010 on the same date, but 126% higher than last week. Accumulated exports to date reach 1,170 tons, representing 1.5% of current season’s forecast.
Significant progression is expected during next week, since the V Region is going through its harvest peak. Also, exports will begin in the VI Region, while the peak will be reached during December in the Metropolitan Region, when volumes are expected to surpass 3,000 tons.

Higher degree-days accumulation than last week has been registered in the North Zone, especially in the IV Region, in areas closer to Ovalle (Carachilla station), where accumulation is finally higher than last season, leading to good fruit ripening. Meanwhile, cooler temperatures were reported in the VI and VII and the differential is therefore higher than last week. In the V and Metropolitan Regions, and in the VIII Region and south, temperatures remain warm, showing higher degree-days
accumulation regarding 2010 on the same date.

NORTH ZONE (IV – V REGIONS)
In the IV Region, Jewell and O’Neil are going through their harvest peak in Ovalle. Volumes are expected to significantly decrease in this region from Week 49 onward, ending close to Week 50, which is seven days later than during 2010. Jewell and Star register a downward harvest curve in the V Region, while O’Neil would reach its peak next week. The season is expected to finish on a date similar to last year -during Week 52.

CENTRAL ZONE (METROPOLITAN-VI REGIONS)
Harvest remains focused on O’Neil in the Metropolitan Region, while more significant Duke volumes are being reported this week. The peak of O’Neil is foreseen during Weeks 48-49 in that area, and during Weeks 49 -50 in the VI Region. Meanwhile, Duke would reach its peak during Week 51. Slow harvest progression was seen last week in the areas of San Fernando and Chimbarongo as a consequence of low temperatures, which delayed ripening. However, warmer temperatures were registered this week, leading to a good harvest pace. Fruit shows good sizes and quality in both regions.

SOUTH CENTRAL ZONE (VII-VIII REGIONS)
Degree-days accumulation is higher than last season in Curico and Teno, leading to good fruit ripening. O’Neil pickings started last week with low volumes in Linares and Parral and new orchards are starting their activities this week, remaining less significant considering total production in this area. Meanwhile, higher Duke volumes are foreseen starting next week, while Brigitta would begin during Week 50. Harvest of O’Neil started this week in early areas of the VIII Region, and would do so during Week 48 in Los Angeles. High production volumes are expected to be reached during December in both regions, which could lead to difficulties in the management of labor force, since this area accounts for most of the Chilean blueberry production. No significant problems are expected at first, as higher labor force availability is expected because the first crop raspberry would not be harvested in several orchards. Even so, labor force shortage is foreseen during the
season’s peak, which is usual in this area.

SOUTH ZONE (IX – X – XIV REGIONS)
Rainfall was registered in the South Zone early this week, which would last until Thursday in some areas. Harvest of Duke is expected to start during Week 52 in
the IX Region, which is usual in an average year. Nevertheless, temperatures could lead to an early season beginning. Activities would start two weeks later in areas closer to the mountain range. Brigitta is going through fruit growth in the X and XIV Region, while Elliot shows 15% of flowering, with some orchards in fruit growth and others in fruit setting.

Text: Fresh Plaza

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Greemt is a global company specialized in the international trade of organic products. We work with producers from Argentina and Spain, who are fully certified organic according to international standards and are willing or are already exporting. Our differentiating factor is the dual physical presence in Argentina and in Europe, allowing us to be in direct contact with producers and potential worldwide buyers to drive the organic market. Our main objective is to provide quality and safety in organic products, facilitate commercial flow and establish solid relationships between organic producers and buyers, in order to generate business with high revenue.
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